Sunday, July 7, 2013

NCRS Glimpses

So I can't believe how fast the 4th of July passed and here it is another Sunday night with a busy work week ahead.  We got a few extra days off since this year the 4th of July and Independence Day fell on the same date.  Anyway, I got back from my fertilizer mission to Louisiana last Wednesday afternoon.  Since I hadn't been there in awhile, I swung by the NCRS.  One new thing was our GPS controlled irrigation system on Farm 3.  It is a linear system that we have had for over 10 years.  It had always been guided by a buried wire that sent a signal to a sensor for a straight path down the field.  Well one thing that happened is that the wire would frequently break and have to have the irrigation people come down with their sensors to find the break, or as often happened, breaks.  It wasn't cheap.  It wasn't clear what caused the breaks, but it is thought to be some underground varmits that bite the wire thinking it is food.  It only happens here on Farm  3 as we have the same system on Farm 5 and it works fine.  So this year we decided to go modern and get GPS guidance.  In fact, this is the first run with it installed.  So try and bite that! 
I will also report that this is the first run of the irrigation all year.  It is rare that there is no irrigation in June, but we have been cursed and blessed by rainfall.  But given the choice, I would take rain over drought. In spite of the delayed planting due to rain, the corn is looking really good.  Here is some corn in plots on Farm 7 that had a planter application of Pro-Germinator + Sure-K + Micro 500 + eNhance in the seed furrow.  It had been sidedressed several weeks ago.

Compare that to this plot below which has nitrogen, but no planter fertilizer.  We do this to measure the effects on yield of the different treatments in this experiment.
Here is one of the sugarbeet plots also on Farm 7.  It too is looking very good.  Lot's to be learned when we get the results this fall. 
So that was but a glimpse of what it looked like last Wednesday afternoon.  I hope to get out again tomorrow for more.  In the meantime, I liked the way this picture looked.  It's the Farm 3 irrigation from a different angle.
I do hope your 4th of July celebration was special and safe, and that you have all of the fingers that you started with.  I also hope that you spent it with family or friends instead of just buying a new washer and dryer at an Independence Day sale.  What would the Founding Fathers think about that?